Companies Save Money Through EPA's Free ENERGY STAR Program
Boulder Bookstore Success Cited
The Energy Star program developed by the Environmental Protection Agency, helps many different types of companies, from in-home businesses to large manufacturers, save money by cutting energy costs and help the environment in the process. So far, EPA's Energy Star programs have prevented the emission of more than 3.5 billion pounds of carbon dioxide through voluntary partnerships with companies, all at a profit to participating businesses.
Energy Star Small Business is a free service helping companies cut their energy costs through targeted investments that improve facility and equipment performance. EPA provides unbiased, accurate technical information, and strategies that cut energy costs, while maintaining, or improving facility comfort and lighting quality. Lenders, working with EPA, provide attractive finance rates for new equipment needed for implementation. EPA is also developing free software to help companies calculate potential energy savings and return-on-investment. When Boulder Bookstore owner David Bolduc was asked why he joined the Energy Star Small Business program, he answered, "Why wouldn't I?" Through this program,
Boulder Bookstore saves $4,800 annually on energy bills while saving 1,429 kWh, preventing 13,889 pounds of pollution.
In 1991, Bolduc moved his 7,000 sq. ft. bookstore a half a block to a facility three times that size; however the electricity bill only increased by one-third. Since the move, Bolduc has saved thousands of dollars in electricity bills per year-a plus for any retail owner. Bolduc's upgrades earned the bookstore between $1,200 and $1,800 in rebates from its public service company and Bolduc recouped his energy investment in just three years.
The old bookstore was lit with mostly 40-watt, T-12 lamps with standard magnetic ballasts. When Bolduc moved, these lamps were replaced with 34-watt, T-12 Fluorescent lamps with electronic ballasts. Additionally, Bolduc installed deep-cell ceiling fixtures with electronic ballasts, 17 metal halide 400-watt fixtures, and about 30 halogen flood lamps. He is now upgrading the 34-watt, T-12s to energy-efficient 32-watt, T-8 Fluorescent lamps with electronic ballasts which have a higher energy efficiency and maintain a higher color-rendering index.
These features, Bolduc says, are a must for lighting a retail establishment where product merchandising is important. Bolduc believes the brighter light levels enhance the appearance of the books, which probably keeps customers in the store longer, reading - and buying - his books.
EPA cites other examples of the impact of the Energy Star program, including:
Energy Star provides:
Companies can sign up from the website or call toll-free 1-888 STAR YES.
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Page 8 COLUMNS & NEWS -- CUBAC Column, T2 Column
Page 9 R & D Funding
Page 11 TIPS & TREASURES -- Spindles Cut Costs
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